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  • An Epic Fantasy Novel - from the Writer of Red Wine Please!


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    Tasty Syrah from the Northern Rhone Valley

    The Rh?ne Valley stretches from Lyon in the north to Avignon in the south.? The Rh?ne wines are grouped into two distinct regions, the Northern Rh?ne and the Southern Rh?ne.? There are many differences between the two, with the north having a much different climate, including harsh winters.? The south is warmer, and more forgiving, but also drier and more prone to drought.? Soil types vary throughout both regions, from rich soils to nothing more than a field of stones.? In the south there are many micro-climates, with a broader diversity throughout the region than you will find in the north.

    Grapes also vary widely between the two regions.? In the south the reds are generally blends, with the iconic Chateauneuf-du-Pape traditionally containing Grenache, Syrah and Mourvêdre.? The wines of the south can technically contain many more grapes under the governing laws, in fact almost twenty.? In the north there are far fewer, and on the red side only one.? That is Syrah.

    Now, this is France, so it’s not going to be quite that easy.? Within the different AOCs (a regional designation of origin – Appellation d’Origine Contr?lée) of the northern Rh?ne, the requirements vary.? Traditionally they have blended a small amount of white wine with the Syrah.? This could be Viognier in C?te-R?tie, or either Marsanne or Rousanne in Hermitage and Saint Joseph.? In Cornas, the red must be 100% Syrah.? These reds, whether containing the small amount of white or not, tend to be big, fleshy wines which age extremely well.? They likely have a strong savory component, and some spice.? Wines from Hermitage and C?te-R?tie are considered to be among the best in the world.? The other areas have consistently gained in reputation over the past few decades.? Here we will look at a wine from Saint Joseph, in this case one made from 100% Syrah.

    La Source Saint JosephWine:? 2015 Ferraton Père & Fils “La Source” Saint-Joseph ?

    Winery Location: ? part of Ferraton’s portfolio – grapes from Saint Joseph, Northern Rh?ne

    Tasted By:? Neil & Cheri ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? Date:? January 2019

    Tasting Notes: This wine undergoes a very traditional fermentation process, followed by partial aging for 12 months in oak.? A dark red wine, this has a rich nose of ripe, dark fruit with meaty overtones and spice.? On the palate it is rich, but not over the top.? Ripe fruit flavors are accented with the traditional savory notes and a spice filled finish.? This is actually quite smooth now, and fairly seamless.? It is ready to drink, but should last for many years.? With wines from this area commanding high prices, you can still get this for around $30 and try a fairly classic example of northern Rh?ne Syrah.? If you try to get a bottle of its more expensive cousins from C?te-R?tie or Hermitage, be prepared to pay several times that amount for a good one.

    Price Point – ?? $32 suggested retail

    Would We Buy It? ? yes – as mentioned above this is a chance to get a good northern Rh?ne red for a reasonable price.

    This is a value priced northern Rh?ne red, and a good way to introduce yourself to the big Syrah’s from the region.

    A votre santé!


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